Teamsters General President Jim Hoffa announced today the union's endorsement of President Barack Obama for re-election in 2012. Hoffa made the official announcement to more than 1,500 Teamster members attending the union's annual conference in Las Vegas.
"President Obama is the clear choice for working families in November," Hoffa said. "Despite inheriting the worst economy since the Great Depression, President Obama has led the country down the long road back to prosperity, providing relief for the middle class and fighting for workers' rights."
The International Brotherhood of Teamsters, with 1.4 million members, is one of the largest and most diversified labor unions in the country.
"In these years that I've been in office, I've seen and appreciated how you support the American economy and social justice, a tradition that goes back more than a 100 years," President Obama said by phone to Teamsters at the Las Vegas conference. "America would look a lot different without the Teamsters.
"We're not going to go back to a 'you're-on-your-own' economy. We're going to move forward," Obama said. The Teamsters gave President Obama a standing ovation following his remarks.
Today's endorsement was the result of a months-long process that included scientific polling of Teamster members, surveys of local union and joint council leaders and deliberations by the union's democratically elected General Executive Board.
"Working families know who is fighting for their rights, and it sure isn't Mitt Romney," said Teamsters General Secretary-Treasurer Ken Hall. "President Obama has worked hard to make sure that Wall Street is held responsible for ruining our economy, enacting the most sweeping financial reform package since the Great Depression."
With the endorsement, the union will begin putting boots on the ground in all 50 states to help re-elect President Obama and keep "vulture capitalist" Romney out of the White House.
"Mitt Romney would be the fox guarding the henhouse," Hoffa said. "He represents everything that is wrong with our financial system. He made his money as CEO of Bain Capital by destroying U.S. businesses, sending good-paying American jobs overseas and filling his pockets with millions while putting workers out on the street."
Founded in 1903, the Teamsters Union represents 1.4 million hardworking men and women throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.